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Go For Antenatal And Post-Natal Services —Rise-Ghana To Mothers
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The Executive Director of the Rural Initiatives for Self-Empowerment- Ghana (RISE-Ghana), a Bolgatanga based Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), Mr Awal Ahmed Kariama has admonished expectant mothers in the Kasena Nankana West District in the Upper East Region to patronise both antenatal and post-natal services in order to help reduce newborn and maternal deaths in the district.

He said both maternal and neonatal deaths continue to pose a great threat to the healthcare sector in the district and the country as a whole.

Global statistics indicate that each year 2.9 million newborns die within the first month of birth, with an additional 2.6 million showing no sign of life at birth.

According to health professionals, the main causes of newborn mortality, which occurs mostly in developing countries, include complications due to prematurity, complications during delivery and infections.

Health professionals, however, advise that newborn deaths can be reduced if expectant mothers and mothers with newborn babies regularly visit health facilities for medical care.

Speaking at a sensitization health durbar at Kayoro in the Kasena Nankana West District to address low demand for ante-natal and post-natal services as well as low uptake of optimal breastfeeding practices among pregnant women, women in fertility age and new mothers, Mr Kariama said the low patronage of antenatal services by expectant mothers contribute to the high incidence of newborn and maternal deaths in the country.

The durbar was under the project: “Mother and Baby Health Friendly Initiative (MBFFI)”, which the Kasena Nankana West district is one of the three beneficiary districts in the Upper East Region, where the project is being piloted.

The MBFFI initiative funded by UNICEF and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with support from the Ghana Health Service.

The project aims among other things to strengthen the leadership and collaboration for maternal and newborn health, breastfeeding as well as improve facility-based quality of care for both mothers and newborns.

Mr Kariama told the Daily Graphic in an interview that the project is currently being implemented in 32 communities in the Kasena Nankana West District.

The Kayoro Community Durbar, he said, was attended by various community members, including opinion leaders, community leaders, emergency transport service operators, expectant mothers and mothers with newborn babies.

“The MBFHI project has adequately trained health workers and equipped health facilities to a level that, patients don’t have to worry about issues around staff attitudes and service delivery quality in the district”, he said.

He, however, appealed to husbands to support their wives in the practice of exclusive breastfeeding.

That, he added, exclusive breastfeeding could only be achieved if both the husband and wife were in support of the concept.

Source: Daily Graphic

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